New Normal, New Me, New Us: Four Fundamental Questions

By Hasan Tahsin Güngör

When we talk about developing something in the world of business, we usually mean making a person, a product, a team or an institution better—more “preferable” than it is currently. The key word is “preferred.” Why should I want to be better at work? The answer is very simple: to be preferred.

Nowadays, many people and institutions are participating in and organizing activities to develop themselves and others. When asked why they organized or participated, replies vary, but often one says one participated because it was part of a development plan. Many people attend programmes with no idea of how it will make them a preferred person. For example, there are around 4,000 certified coaches who have participated in coaching trainings in Turkey who are not actively engaged in coaching. So why did they take the training?

It is more useful to ask, “Will I/we become more preferable after I/we participate in an event”? The phrase “to be preferred" is the foundation of my philosophy of continuous learning and development.

Based on this philosophy, every year, I determine a strategy to make myself the preferred person for the next year. In other words, I handle my next year’s career planning in a strategic way every year. If there is no difference between the "me from yesterday" and "today’s me" in terms of development, how can "tomorrow’s me" be a preferred person? This strategic approach becomes even more important in creating the New Me who is adapting to the New Normal due to the Covid-19.

Let's start by asking the four key questions for the creation of the New Me:

  1. Who am I?
  2. Why do I exist?
  3. What do I want to accomplish?
  4. When will I accomplish this?

Although the questions seem easy, it may not be easy to answer them. The first two questions guide me to define my reason for existence, above and beyond goals—in other words, my Purpose. The last two questions guide me to define my big goals and a timeline—in other words a strategy and plan.

1. Who am I?

I am Hasan Tahsin. I have worked as a management consultant in human resources for 22 years. I am a designer and practitioner who enables people and companies to achieve their goals within the framework of my “Consulted Consultant” purpose.

At the same time, I am a person who shares my 50 years of experience with young people in my university course called "Business Life" at Mimar Sinan Güzel Sanatlar University, which prepares them for a life in the world of business.

2. Why do I exist?

I am here to be a source of inspiration and to mobilize people and institutions by sharing what I see through my own world view. I continue my activities in these areas either through one-to-one or in-class activities, through mentoring sessions and workshops.

At the end of the January 2020, I reviewed and confirmed the above answers, which were the outcome of a strategic career planning session I conducted with myself in October 2019. At that time, it was obvious that I was going to review my answers to the last two questions because of Covid-19, which was spreading rapidly around the world. So, I rewrote them because I switched to working from home on March 12 and I needed to define the New Me in order to adapt myself to the New Normal.

3. What do I want to accomplish?

I aim to pursue my Purpose of being a source of inspiration as a Consulted Consultant in the New Normal also. However, a question comes to my mind: Will the tools and methods used by the Old Me also work this time?

Should I take a part in Instagram Live broadcasts, where I have no experience? How should I continue to deliver my courses at the university? How can I avoid being reactive when answering these questions? For example, my colleagues are making efforts to transfer their in-class training material to the online platforms. What did I do? I tried to identify what people and companies need during this time. I came up with different kinds of workshops which we conduct using online webinars.

For example:

  • Working from home effectively
  • Perceiving Emotions and Managing with Emotions
  • Working and Managing without Damaging Others
  • New Me and New Us in the New Normal

4. When will I accomplish this?

In the New Normal, I aim to pursue the New Me as long as my mental and physical health permit. As you can see from my own example, the answers I gave to the four questions direct me to the "How" question. In other words, it leads me to find new solutions.

Thanks to my questions and answers, the new solutions and applications that I create with my team members create the New Us in the New Normal. Yes, the answers you give to the questions make you proactive, not reactive. Thus, they guide you to offer unique solutions and applications to your customers.

Once you have answered the four questions, are you done? No. Now it is time to address the current behaviours of the New Me and the New Us, which will lead you to put these answers into action. Will your existing behaviours help the New Me and the New Us to be effective? What behaviours should you change or improve? We will discuss the behaviour issue in our next article.

Hasan Tahsin Güngör is a “Consulted Consultant” in Turkey, and a facilitator for The Complete Leader.